The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has added a boost to its manpower strength with additional 1,549 recruits of Basic Military Training Course 42/2021 and 49 Branch Commission Officers of Course 1/2022.
The Minister of Defence, who is also the reviewing officer, Major General Bashir Magashi (Rtd), represented by the Chief of Defence Staff, General Lucky Irabor, advised the graduands not to see the military profession as just another job, but one that requires absolute discipline, loyalty, hard work and all seriousness especially at this crucial time when the Nation is battling the challenges of insecurity on several fronts.
He also reminded them that the military as a noble profession demands extraordinary courage, commitment, and patriotism, and Nigeria will continue to count on them and demand such qualities from them.
“Above all, you must exhibit the core values of Integrity, Service before Self and Excellence for which the NAF is known”, he said.
The Reviewing officer also appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari, for his unflinching support to meet the Armed Forces operational and logistics requirements in general and the NAF in particular.
According to him, “I have noted with satisfaction, measures that you have emplaced to engender transparency, accountability, and prudent utilisation of resources for optimal results. I implore you not to relent and assure you of my continued support to sustain your capacity development efforts.”
The Chief of Air Staff, Oladayo Amao stated that the ceremony marked the first time the NAF was solely training and graduating Branch Commission cadets, believing that the enlistment of duly qualified airmen/airwomen as officers through Branch Commissioning will bolster morale towards more hard-work, excellence and loyalty in the NAF.
The Air Force chief also added that the NAF has since taken cognizance of its primary duties in the maintenance of security and promotion of peace in the country which, he said, has been facilitated through the active support of the Minister of Defence.
“I therefore make bold to say that the NAF is poised to enhance and sustain critical air power capabilities required for joint force employment in pursuit of national security imperatives”, he stated.
Air Marshal Amao appreciated President Buhari for the acquisition of the J-F17 Thunder Multi-role aircraft and the Super Tucano ground attack aircraft. He also revealed that the Federal Government is on the verge of procuring additional combat platforms for the NAF.
These include the DA-42 surveillance aircraft, A109 Trekker attack helicopters and Beechcraft KA-360i surveillance aircraft.
These, according to the CAS, were essential enablers to expeditiously prosecute the current fight against terrorism.